Tackling air pollution: How Bosnia and Herzegovina sets an example with environment-friendly measures

By: |
November 4, 2020 11:19 AM

With the backing of the United Nations Development Programme, the severe pollution hit nation is attempting to turn around and introduced new environmentally sustainable rules for the general public.

Bosnia and Herzegovina, Sarajevo and Zenica pollution, highest polluted cities, United Nations Development Programme, UNDP, Go Green initiative, Delhi pollutionBosnian cities of Sarajevo and Zenica has the world’s highest level of pollution. (Reuters Photo)

Bosnian cities of Sarajevo and Zenica has the world’s highest level of pollution. Last year in December it reached such dangerous levels that officials had to cancel outdoor public events and ban freight vehicles from roads. The capital city of Bosnia, Sarajevo regularly ranks among Europe’s most polluted cities. The city is a valley where air circulation is limited and hence is cursed with geographical disadvantage. To make matters worse residents use coal to heat their homes during winters adding to the pollution level.

With the backing of the United Nations Development Programme, the severe pollution hit nation is attempting to turn around and introduced new environmentally sustainable rules for the general public. Cleaning the river bed, switching to the gas grid for municipal heating, increasing the energy efficiency of residential buildings and promoting bicycle use are to name a few.

In August 2020, UNDP said it launched a ‘Go Green’ initiative and set the goal of planting 10,000 joining hands with the municipality. Planting trees will not just help in combating the problem of air pollution but also prevent landslides floods and boost agriculture.

Delhi which is becoming the Bosnia of Asia with its rising smog level has been experiencing ‘very poor’ air quality even with the onset of winters. Stubble burning in the neighbouring states are contributing to most of the pollutants in the Delhi air finds SAFAR, a national initiative introduced to measure the air quality of a metropolitan city. Other factors like industrial pollution, construction and demolition activities, road dust are equally responsible for the hazardous level of PM2.5 and PM 10 in air.

While the Delhi government has taken several measures to fight pollution, the recent one being launching the Green App to lodge complaints about flouting anti-pollution norms several other steps taken on a personal level can help in reducing Delhi’s air pollution. These include the use of public transport, avoiding burning garbage and using an inverter for power backup to name a few.

In order to save one’s health from this toxic pollution that can become lethal during the covid-19 pandemic situation, avoid smoking indoors or outdoors, wear N95 masks and keep air purifiers and indoor plants at home.

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